Originally Posted by OldRightHander
Ok, so they didn't play well. Heck, you could argue that they didn't play well enough to deserve to win, but that's not the point. They played well enough to win the game if it had been called correctly. They might have had a shutout if it had been called correctly, and if that had happened what would we be saying about a 13-0 win?
"Called correctly" swings both ways. I'll give you the roughing-the-passer call back, but you have to give me about 4 or 5 holding penalties on Simeon Rice throughout the game that didn't draw a flag. See where the final score ends up if some Bengals scoring drives get flagged out of existence or if Palmer is looking at 3rd and 15 a few extra times during the game. You assume a correctly called game ends up 13-0 Bengals, but you simply assume a correctly called game merely negates the two penalties that you disagree with.
And I think "Played well enough to win" is a generous assessment of the Bengals performance -- in my mind, neither team really played particularly well. A better team beats the Bengals by two scores in a game like that.
I simply go back to my original point (which Bengals fans I've talked to seem to have inexplicably difficult time dealing with): It was a crap call, but crap calls/no-calls happen every week in the NFL -- "elite" teams find a way to win. I guarantee you that at least 1 time before this season ends the Bengals will be on the benefitting end of a similar situation.